Wanderlust Wednesday is a series where I revisit a past travel adventure and memory. This week, I’m sharing a memory from Finland.
In 2012, I travelled from Stockholm to Helsinki via overnight ferry. Having grown up on an island on the west coast of Canada, I’m not the biggest fan of ferries, but this wasn’t your typical ferry ride. From start to finish, you knew it was something special!
The 16-hour trek started out by sailing through the Stockholm Archipelago. Seeing all the beautiful, lush islands with their tiny red cabins reminded me so much of home that I couldn’t help but smile and feel the tiniest bit homesick — but in the best way possible.
I, along with my travel mates, stayed on the ship’s upper deck until sundown and we couldn’t take the cold anymore. The night on the ship could only be described as entertaining (there was an ABBA cover band, a smorgasbord and so much more!), but that’s a story for another day!
After sleeping in cramped (and claustrophobia-inducing quarters) we awoke to blue skies, beaming sunshine and the Archipelago Sea, the world’s largest archipelago, just off the coast of Helsinki, Finland. While everything was beautiful, I was completely taken by the Fortress of Suomenlinna, a UNESCO World Heritage Site (pictured above). A stunning piece of history was just right there in front of us. While it is a popular tourist destination, when we sailed by the island was empty; it seemed completely peaceful and beautifully untouched.
Although Finland hadn’t been high on my travel bucket list – in all honesty, when I booked my trip it was merely a stop between Sweden and Russia – but after having the chance to briefly explore it by land and sea, I quickly realised I’d underestimated this Nordic nation.
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